Monday, June 20, 2016

An historic 11 year vertical tasting of Vondeling's Babiana Cape White blend

It is very seldom indeed that we get a chance to taste 11 years of one wine from any wine farm. Not many farms have vinoteques that can go back that far, especially for a white wine. So we leapt at the chance to taste Vondeling’s Babiana white blend of vintages from 2005 through to 2015. Winemaker Matthew Copeland took over in July 2007 from the previous winemaker. And he has really taken this wine to new heights. Babiana is a white blend which never has less than 50% Chenin Blanc and the 2015 has 60% Chenin, 18% Grenache Blanc, 16% Viognier and a little (6%) Chardonnay
We began with a tasting of 2014 Rurale Methode Ancestral made from Chardonnay. Refreshing and sparkling.
Trade, media and sommeliers gather for the tasting
No one ever wants to sit in the front row. A bit like school
Winemaker Matthew Copeland took us through the tasting and explained all the wines
Julian Johnsen, one of the three owners, with an answer to a question
At tasting like these it is extremely hard to empty one's glass after a flight. One wants to keep tasting and savour these vintages. Georgie Prout, Jonathan Snashall and James Pietersen 
Jaap-Henk Koelewijn and his lady and Kyle Martin enjoying the evening
The first flight
The 2008 showed very well indeed making many of us wish we still had access to some, with clean limes and fynbos on the nose, a good mouthful of fruit and glycerols, and minerality. An elegant food wine. The 2010 with honey, banana, caramel notes on the nose, is easy drinking with long flavours, clean fruit and great minerality. Another food wine
The second flight
 The 2012 is perfumed with minerality on the nose. A soft fruit salad of melons, apricots, pears and peach with lovely warmth. The 2013 which is still available was our highest scoring wine (19/20). Closed on the nose with hints of linseed, the taste is clean clear with limes, lemons white peaches and a beautiful mouth feel. This wine won the Trophy for Best White Blend in the annual Six Nations Wine Challenge
Bread and crackers
Cheese board with nuts, fruit and chutney
© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2016

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